eNable – 3D Printed Arm Functionality Improvement: Empower Patients to Write

eNable – 3D Printed Arm Functionality Improvement: Empower Patients to Write

For the past three years, the e-NABLE community has been working very hard to create free and low cost 3D printed upper limb devices and tools that are aimed at helping children and adults who were born missing portions of their hands and arms – to aid them in everyday tasks like riding their bicycles with better balance, giving them the option to eat a sandwich with one hand and drink from a cup with the other, or perhaps more critically, the ability to write with a pen or pencil.

Students on this project team will add critical functionality to an existing base 3D printed hand/arm prosthetic and integrate the new device into the open source e-NABLE paradigm of easy customization and 3D printing.

The current iteration of the Raptor Reloaded hand is a normally-open and wrist driven device. The hand is actuated by a series of threads secured through each of the fingers. The hand then reopens via tied elastics. The hands are currently scaled to order based on measurement provided by the recipient. Improvements in the design would allow for a hand that is normally closed and that would allow for a better pincer grasp. The design is intentionally low tech to accommodate an international need.


More Information: 2017-eNable

How to Apply

Project Features

  • Skill level All levels
  • Students 5-7
  • Likely Majors Any, BME, CE, CS, ECE, IOE, KINES
  • Course Substitutions EE MDE, Honors, CE MDE, ECE Cognate
  • IP & NDA Required? No
  • Summer Opportunity Summer Funding Application
  • Design Students

    Mechanism design and prototyping (CAD design/simulation), Design for manufacturing (3D-print optimization, multi-printer compatibility), Integration of human factors/anthropometry (anatomical sizes, joint positions, ranges of motion)

    • Likely Majors: ME, BME
  • Programmer Students

    Web-application front end utilizing HTML/CSS/Javascript (user interface design, API experience, multi-browser compatibility), Image/data processing/optimization utilizing Javascript (create/modify CAD files, multi-format conversions), Compatibility with existing modular prosthetic design suite

    • Likely Majors: CSE/CS-LSA
  • Biomechanics Modeling Subteam

    Data analysis and modeling, Human subject analysis

    • Likely Majors: IOE, BME, Anatomy, KINES

Faculty Mentor: Jingwen Hu 2017 Stryker projects
Associate Research Scientist, University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute Biosciences Group

Dr. Hu earned a PhD in biomedical engineering from Wayne State University and an MS and a BS in automotive engineering from Tsinghua University. His research interests focus on injury biomechanics in motor-vehicle crashes by a multidisciplinary approach using a combination of experimental, numerical, and epidemiological procedures. He is also interested in human modeling for other applications, including pediatric head injuries in falls and child abuse cases, computer-aided surgery, and seating comfort. His recent research primarily focused on computational investigations on injury mechanism and restraint-system optimization for various vulnerable populations, including children, elderly, pregnant occupants, wheelchair users, and obese occupants.